For many, the idea of practice-to-patient communications involves the singular event of confirming appointments. Advances in technology have made it possible for us to communicate with our patients in so many ways, so why do we limit our patient relationships?
Many practices use yesterday’s standard for communicating with patients—making a phone call and most likely leaving a message. Today, patients are attached to their mobile phones and prefer to communicate through email and text messages. Phone calls require immediate action on their part. Messaging requires action, but at the patient’s convenience. Communicating with my patients in the right place, at the right time, and with the right information, builds my relationship with them.
Patient Communication—A Priority
Communicating with my patients effectively has always been a priority. To aid in that endeavor, we use Solutionreach electronic messaging software. Their technology is fantastic—it’s easy to learn and integrate— and their customer service is superb.
My patients like email and text messages. How do I know? I see them sitting in my office reading email and sending text messages. Does that mean we never speak with a patient over the phone? No, but it does mean that I can message any or all of my patients with one action and still make a call when necessary or preferred.
My staff likes Solutionreach because it saves them time and lets them focus on the patients in front of them. It’s like having an extra staff member.
A Case in Point
Toward the end of last year, we sent a message to our patients via email and text, reminding them that the end of the year was approaching and if they planned on using flex spending dollars toward dental services, they needed to get on our schedule. The message took 2 minutes to produce and send. The results were immediate! Within seconds of hitting send, the phone began to ring and the email began to fill with responses. We booked 5 appointments within the next 4 or 5 minutes. The office took calls and emails from patients responding to the message for the rest of the day!
How many outbound phone calls would it take to make 5 appointments at your practice today? How many phone calls could you make to remind your patients about their flex spending dollars? Electronic messaging is simply the most cost effective and efficient way to reach your patients.
We also message patients about new products or an appointment time that has become available. Office efficiency is improved and we’re driving new revenue.
Start thinking now about how you communicate with your patients. Dental practices need to keep ahead of patients so that we are always meeting their needs. Solutionreach has helped me do that. I’m doing a better job of retaining the patients I have, bringing in patients who left the practice, and acquiring new patients.